‘BLP country’

St Peter a safe seat for Bees, say residents

The governing Democratic Labour Party (DLP) will have a difficult time reversing its losses in St Peter, even though the Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) will be fielding a new candidate come the next general election, according to voters in the constituency.

Hotel executive Colin Jordan, the heir apparent even before former Prime Minister Owen Arthur announced he would retire from elective politics at the end of this parliamentary term, is expected to carry the seat for the BLP, which polled 3,665 votes in the 2013 general election, to 1,683 by the DLP Haynesley Benn.

Several voters, including those who do not support the Opposition, have deemed St Peter BLP country, and do not see a way for the DLP – which is yet to name a candidate – to take the seat.

“I think we will lose the St Peter seat because Barbadians will support Colin Jordan. If Haynesley Benn was here, he would give Colin a run,” a retired teacher of Rose Hill, who wanted to be referred to only as Marcia, told Barbados TODAY during a four-hour Pulse of the People tour of the parish.

“I am [for] party more than person, [but] this is BLP country,” she stressed.

Both major parties are expected to field new candidates for the election, with Benn having been posted to Canada as consul general and Arthur who is due to retire. He has served 33 years – all but the last three as a member of the BLP.

However, despite grooming Jordan and openly pledging his support for the new BLP man, even after he had left the party he had led through three consecutive terms in Government to become an Independent, Arthur’s shadow continues to hover over the constituency, with political observers predicting he might run again.

If he does it could complicate matters for Jordan – who had deputized for Arthur on many an occasion while the former Prime Minister was preparing him to take over – because the former BLP leader has the potential to take votes from his old party.

“If not Owen, nobody else can get my vote,” said a Rose Hill resident and mother-of-four who preferred to be called Angela.

At the same time, Grantley Belgrave of Boscobel said he would support Jordan only if Arthur were not running.

Grantley Belgrave

Yet, the former BLP leader had his detractors, such as Euclid O’Neal of Rose Hill, who complained that “he pull out and ain’t even tell the people nutten” – a clear reference to Arthur’s decision to quit the BLP and become an Independent.

In an August 2014 interview with Barbados TODAY, Arthur had said he would be a “hypocrite” not to support Jordan, with whom he had maintained a close relationship, adding he was confident St Peter would remain a BLP stronghold.

This appeared to hold true today, as most of the people with whom Barbados TODAY spoke pledged their allegiance to Jordan.

“I would like Colin to get through. I would support him,” O’Neal stressed.

“I backing Colin Jordan all the way,” added a voter who called herself Miss Griffith.

But it was not all rosy in Rose Hill for the BLP hopeful, as Michael Straker made it clear, “I sticking with the Dees.”

The support was even more overwhelming in Maynards, where tertiary school student Shakila Belgrave declared she was backing Jordan, who she described as “a very nice gentleman”, while her younger sister Shanika, who stood behind the wrought iron bars of the family shop, said: “I feel he would do a lot for this community. . . I would support him.”

Neighbour Tia Morris has been a longstanding supporter of the BLP, and she said this would not change, even though she had not really met the pretenders to the seat.

Tia Morris

“I am a Bee . . . so I would support who the Bees send. But that also depends on . . . [what] he could do though. I am on Facebook and social media and I don’t see them [the candidates],” Morris noted.

The sentiments were similar in Six Men’s where a man who called himself Mr No Name said: “I support Colin because Owen not coming back.”

However, it was in Six Men’s that the highest level of apathy was found, with a number of constituents, including four young men relaxing on the “block” saying they were disenfranchised because the politicians did not care about the poor.

Still, at least one said he would go to the polls because “these people want voting out”.

Greg Lowe, who moved into Maynards about a year ago and had sought a job through Arthur’s constituency office without success also could not decide who would get his vote.

Greg Lowe

“Right now I would say that they got to come through [campaign in the area] so that you would know whom you would got to go an put your X to,” Lowe told Barbados TODAY, expressing a sentiment shared by Tia Payne of Boscobel.

It was also clear that the DLP’s tardiness in naming a candidate was not helping the ruling party.

Former police officer Dave Cumberbatch has been tipped to contest the seat on the DLP ticket, but uncertainty continues to prevail, making it difficult for Cumberbatch to attract any support.

“I know Dave Cumberbatch . . . he was a police [officer] like me, but I don’t see him,” a retired lawman who called himself Slappy Ward said, even as he said he was not sure he would vote, “ but if I was going to vote, I would support Colin”.   

Former teacher Marcia, who Barbados TODAY met in Rose Hill, said she was a supporter of a party, not any individual.

She also does not believe in change simply for the sake of change.

Yet, despite clear hints that she has been a DLP backer, she refused to say who would get her vote next election.

“ . . . . I think the Government will change at the next elections. I will vote, but you wouldn’t know who I am voting for or which party.”

Still, that is a lot more than a Boscobel woman who called herself Erma would commit, as she simply did not care who wins the election.

  

emmanueljoseph@barbadostoday.bb

16 Responses to ‘BLP country’

  1. Peter May 6, 2017 at 9:32 am

    All the BLP need to do now is to run strong candidates in St. John against Mara who really and truly inherited that seat, and St. Lucy against Dennis Kellman whom every Bajan considers a downright idiot, There are a few more seats in St. Michael. example…. BRATAX man Sinkler, James Paul and arrogant Mr. Speaker. and oh Mr. Blood bath promiser… Blackett.

    Reply
  2. Randolph May 6, 2017 at 11:17 am

    Peter,I predict that the Dems will lose all the seats you mentioned.This is going to be a whitewash.

    Reply
    • Carson C. Cadogan May 6, 2017 at 12:55 pm

      Wunna always predicting a whitewash.

      In 2013 according to you all the DLP would get 2 seats.

      Reply
      • Kevin May 6, 2017 at 2:11 pm

        That’s true CCC. Only St. Lucy and St. John the Dees were to get back again after the 2013 elections according to many callers on Brasstacks.

        Reply
      • Peter May 6, 2017 at 3:09 pm

        Dem buy bare votes Mr. stool pigeon Cadogan….

        Reply
        • Carson C. Cadogan May 6, 2017 at 10:24 pm

          The vote buying was by the crooked Barbados Labour Party.

          Just one example:

          During the 2013 elections one of my constituents came to me and told me that a BLP operative offered her $100.00 to vote for the BLP candidate. All she had to do was to take a picture of her ballot showing that she voted for the BLP candidate with her cell phone and she would get the $100.00.

          Reply
    • harry turnover May 6, 2017 at 3:20 pm

      …..and I predict they will lose all the seats that he didn’t mentioned too….this will be the whitewash…yours’ will be a landslide.
      The first result I want in should be Denis Lowe,then Ronald Jones,Chris Sinckler,Denis Kellman in that order and the last one Stuart cause he as the CAPTAIN should always be the last one to get off in a sinking ship

      Reply
  3. Carson C. Cadogan May 6, 2017 at 12:53 pm

    Now lets see:

    3665 plus 1683 equals 5348

    from those you interview about 15 persons

    and draw the conclusion that the BLP will win.

    Wonderful!!!!!

    Reply
  4. Rommell May 6, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    Time to send home de DEMS just like how DEM send home people in 2013. “Ah Can’ Wait!!!”

    Reply
  5. Kevin May 6, 2017 at 2:14 pm

    Many folks often comment about how the people of St. Lucy and St. John are silly to vote for the DLP whomsoever runs. However, those comments are not heard however about the people of St. Peter, St. Joseph, St. Thomas and Ch Ch West.

    Reply
  6. Peter May 6, 2017 at 8:13 pm

    Here Carson. Here Kevin, I got some DEM corn fuh wunna.. Cluck, cluck..

    Reply
  7. Carson C. Cadogan May 6, 2017 at 10:16 pm

    “The top-rated country for quality of life in the Caribbean in 2017 is Barbados. Barbados also ranked 54th for quality of life in a list of countries worldwide.

    The ranking only considers countries that are members of the United Nations and that provide acceptable data to the agency.

    See the full ranking of Caribbean nations with their world ranking in parentheses.

    Barbados (54)
    Bahamas (58)
    Antigua and Barbuda (62)
    Trinidad and Tobago (65)
    Cuba (68)
    St Kitts and Nevis (74)
    Grenada (79)
    St Lucia (92)
    Jamaica (94)
    Dominica (96)
    Dominican Republic (99)
    St Vincent and the Grenadines (99)
    Belize (103)
    Guyana (127)
    Haiti (163)
    The Human Development Index (HDI), released by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) essentially ranks the best countries in the world to live.

    The UNDP works in nearly 170 countries and territories, helping to achieve the eradication of poverty, and the reduction of inequalities and exclusion.’

    Why wont the BAJAN NEWS MEDIA AND Emmanuel Joseph print stories like this? From reputable sources?

    Reply
  8. Mikey May 6, 2017 at 10:22 pm

    @Carson Cadogan, quality of life for who ? For people who can push their hands in the pork barrel , get pay but don’t work >

    Reply
    • Jennifer May 6, 2017 at 10:37 pm

      @Mikey – hahahahahahahahaha – sweet. keep it up. love it, pork barrel. Nothing but coons

      Reply
  9. Clemkonan May 7, 2017 at 9:14 am

    Little food for comfort. The reality is that being poor in Barbados in 1972 was hell and still is in 2017 the comparisons are insulting and attractIve only to feeble minds.

    Reply
  10. Greengiant May 7, 2017 at 10:48 am

    The first time I knew about vote buying was in 1981 as a part of the late Lionel Craig’s BLP campaign team against Erskine Sandiford in St. Michael South. So if there’s vote buying by the Dems they would have learnt from the others. That’s why I say they’re both the same. No doubt about it.

    Reply

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